Episode 6

The Inheritance of the Not-Chosen People, a story of Cessair by Sandy Dunlop | S5 Ep6

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According to the Book of Invasions, the closest thing Ireland has to a creation story, Cessair was the first person to set foot on Irish soil. She was also the granddaughter of Noah and, as Sandy Dunlop of Bard Mythologies tells it, she was also a woman of the world.


Sandy Dunlop has run Bard Mythologies with his wife Ellen for twenty-five years. He sees himself as a "cultural mythographer" with an understanding of the way cultural myths are used and abused by the powerful. He ran a consultancy specializing in helping global brands discover their archetypal and mythical roots.

On bardmythologies.com you can learn more about the Bard Summer School and you’ll find a rich collection of Irish Myths and Global Myths that take you deep into the time honored oral storytelling tradition. 

Instagram and TikTok: @bard.mythologies


  • Not-chosenness can be seen as the story of the Irish people.
  • As Marshall McLuhan says, as the fish knows absolutely nothing is water, humans know nothing about their own culture.
  • Sandy challenges the “strong man” myth, and those like Trump and Jordan Peterson who use (and misuse) this myth to their advantage.
  • The great Babylonian myth of the goddess Tiamat and her consort Apsu; the body of the great mother was dismembered by the strong man Marduk to create the world.  
  • The role of the autonomic nervous system (fight, flight, freeze, or fawn) in how characters respond in stories and in how we respond to the events in our lives.
  • You can hear Marisa’s story of Cessair and Fintan Mac Bochra in S3 Ep 9, When Tides Rise, Build Your Own Boat

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Music at the start of the show is by Beth Sweeney and Billy Hardy: billyandbeth.com

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About the Podcast

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KnotWork Storytelling
Myths Retold, from Ireland and Beyond

About your host

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Marisa Goudy

Marisa Goudy is a story healer, a writing coach, and a word witch. Her book, The Sovereignty Knot: A Woman’s Way to Freedom, Power, Love, and Magic, was released in 2020.
Marisa nurtures writers and storytellers in her long-running online writing community, the Sovereign Writers’ Knot.
On this show, Marisa combines her passion for story with her love of Irish literature, culture, and folklore and her fascination with the Celtic world. She has a particular love of stories of heroines, goddess, and women whose tales were forgotten by history.

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